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The study looked at how dispute resolution tactics affected employee performance at chosen commercial banks in Lagos State. The study aimed to investigate the effects of pressing strategy on employee competency, smoothing strategy on employee creativity, avoiding strategy on employee service delivery, and confrontation strategy on employee productivity.

The survey included three commercial banks: First Bank, Zenith Bank, and Wema Bank. The study was conducted using primary data. A systematic questionnaire was utilised to obtain the relevant information from 42 randomly selected bank employees.

The descriptive statistics and regression analysis were used to analyse the data. The study found that forcing strategy had a significant impact on employee competency (β=0.397; p<0.05), smoothing strategy had a significant impact on employee creativity (β=0.278; p<0.05), avoiding strategy had a significant impact on employee service delivery (β=0.248; p<0.05), and confronting strategy had a significant impact on employee productivity (β =0.593; p<0.05).

The study maintained that conflict resolution tactics improve employee performance if they are utilised constructively. The study advises, among other things, that both management and employees must commit to work together amicably by developing strong plans and implementing acceptable policies as effective machinery for controlling conflict in organisations on a constant basis.

Chapter one


1.1 Background for the Study

Conflict is a common occurrence in commercial organisations, resulting from a misalignment of worker and management interests (Uju, 2010). Conflict is unavoidable in the workplace, and it often occurs amongst individual employees inside an organisation since their beliefs, aims, interests, and targets differ.

Conflict arises at both the individual and communal levels, with personality, structural, and other external elements at play. Conflict in organisations is unavoidable, regardless of the strong management practices and regulations put in place. Conflict is more likely to arise in hierarchical organisations where people with opposing views, beliefs, and philosophies interact.

Conflict can be defined as a situation in which various employees’ interests and views clash and obstruct one other’s attempts to attain organisational goals (Longe, 2015). Conflict can also be defined as the breakdown of efficient communication amongst employees and groups inside the organisation.

According to Thakore (2013), conflict is a normal part of life in every organisation and will continue to occur as long as employees compete for recognition, power, achievement, and security.

Thus, conflict does not degrade an organization’s reputation in the sense that it allows for the resolution of contentious matters for the benefit of both employees and the organisation.

Management’s role is not to suppress or resolve conflict, which will inevitably arise, but to manage it constructively in order to stimulate employee and organisational performance. Conflict management is an important aspect of corporate management.

According to Ojo and Abolade (2013), the goal of conflict management is not to create an ideal corporate setting because this is impossible given the contrasts in interests and goals between employees and management.

Conflict management, on the other hand, strategically employs existing conflict resolution methodologies to develop an effective framework for conflict resolution in corporate organisations. Conflict has both positive and bad effects on an organization’s performance, and how it is managed determines organisational performance (Longe 2015).

Properly managed conflict improves work performance, whereas destructively managed conflict causes dislocation and dissolution of the entire group, hence hindering organisational effectiveness.

Conflict resolution solutions show an organization’s decision-making weaknesses. However, this may encourage an organisation to seek long-term conflict resolution options.

It is the role of management to resolve conflict constructively in order to improve employee and organisational performance, because such action results in better communication, pleasant industrial relations, stronger team building, and higher productivity. Thus, every organisation strives to create a pleasant work atmosphere in which connections between employees and management are amicable and respected by both parties.

Given the banking industry’s vulnerability to massive financial losses in the event of a conflict, conflict resolution should be prioritised and successful. To that purpose, the study examines the impact of conflict resolution on employee performance in selected Nigerian commercial banks.

1.2 Statement of the Problem

Organisations, regardless of business, are bound to experience conflict. This is because individual employees have distinct interests, goals, and targets that they want to attain, and the interests of employees are not always the same as the interests and goals of managers.

The tactics that an organisation, such as First Bank of Nigeria Plc, uses to resolve disagreements impact both its corporate performance and the performance of its employees. This suggests that conflict has both beneficial and bad consequences on organisational performance.

Constructively-handled conflicts bring peaceful coexistence among employees, creates industrial harmony between employees and management, fosters employee performance, improves an organization’s profitability and growth prospects, enhances the quality of organisational decisions, informs organisations on effective ways of dealing with future conflicts based on prior conflict experience, reduces unhealthy rivalry between employees and management, and ensures

On the other hand, damaging or poorly handled disagreements waste resources, discourage personnel from performing at their best, generate discontent between staff and management, and make it harder to fulfil organisational goals.

Furthermore, the consequences of improperly managed disagreement with respect in deposit money banks are severe. This is because poorly managed conflicts can put commercial banks at risk of significant financial losses.

Furthermore, unresolved conflicts have the potential to significantly reduce commercial banks’ profitability, tarnish their goodwill, result in high employee turnover, scare existing and prospective customers and investors away, jeopardise customers’ and investors’ trust in them, destroy their liquidity and insolvency, and, at worst, lead to financial distress.

It is consequently vital for senior management of commercial banks to guarantee that conflicts are constructively managed whenever they occur, in order to promote both employee and organisational performance.

1.3 Objectives of the Study

The study’s broad goal is to investigate the impact of dispute resolution tactics on employee performance at selected commercial banks in Lagos State. The study’s particular aims are:

To investigate the impact of a forcing strategy on employee competency in chosen commercial banks in Lagos State.

To determine the impact of a smoothing technique on staff creativity at select commercial banks in Lagos State.

To examine the impact of an avoidance strategy on employee service delivery in selected commercial banks in Lagos State.

To investigate the impact of a confrontation tactic on employee productivity in selected commercial banks in Lagos State.

1.4 Research Questions.

Based on the specific aims, the following questions are extremely important to the study:

How does the forcing strategy affect staff competency in selected commercial banks in Lagos State?

How does the smoothing method affect employee creativity at chosen commercial banks in Lagos State?

How does the avoidance approach affect staff service delivery at selected commercial banks in Lagos State?

How does confrontation approach affect staff productivity in selected commercial banks in Lagos State?

1.5 Research Hypotheses.

In order to get valid conclusions, the following hypothesis is developed to guide the research. The hypotheses are presented as follows:

H01: The forcing technique has no meaningful influence on employee competency in selected commercial banks in Lagos State.

H02: The smoothing method has no meaningful influence on employee creativity in chosen commercial banks in Lagos State.

H03: The avoidance approach has no substantial impact on employee service delivery in chosen commercial banks in Lagos State.

H04: The confrontation method has no meaningful influence on employee productivity in chosen commercial banks in Lagos State.

1.6 Operationalization of variables

The primary goal is to investigate the impact of dispute resolution tactics on employee performance at selected commercial banks in Lagos State. The dependent variable is employee performance

which is measured using four variables: employee competency, employee inventiveness, employee service delivery, and employee competency. The independent variable is conflict resolution, which is represented by the forcing, smoothing, avoidance, and confrontation techniques.

Y = f (Y1, Y2, Y3, Y4).


Y equals employee performance.

Y1 represents employee competency.

Y2 = Employee Creativity.

Y3 = Employee Service Delivery

Y4 equals employee productivity.

X denotes conflict settlement.

X = f(X1, X2, X3, X4).


X1 = Forcing strategy.

X2 = Smoothing approach.

X3 = Avoidance strategy.

X4 = Confrontation approach.

Therefore, we have

Y1=f (X1)……………………1.1


Y3= f(X3)……………………1.3

Y4= f(X4)……………………1.4

Converting these functional forms into a linear regression model yields,

Y1= β0 + β1X1 + µ……………1.5

Y2= β0 + β1X2 + µ……………1.6

Y3= β0 + β1X3 + µ……………1.7

Y4= β0 + β1X4 + µ……………1.8

1.7 Scope of Study

The study investigates the impact of dispute resolution tactics on employee performance in selected commercial banks in Lagos State. The study prioritised three banks: First Bank, Zenith Bank, and Wema Bank. The study included 454 employees. However, the study’s sample size consisted of 42 employees from chosen banks.

1.8 Significance of the Study

The study is relevant in several ways. The study’s findings would enlighten Nigerian bank managers on how to handle conflicts in a proper and constructive manner.

It informs the banking sector about the causes of conflict and the suitable resolution procedures to utilise in order to reduce conflict incidences for the benefit of employees and organisations.

Employees will gain equally from the study because it demonstrates how their intra and inter-relationships produce conflict and the way they might take to overcome it.

The study advises managers in many industries on the most effective strategies to handle conflict in order to enhance organisational and industrial success. Organisations will be taught on dispute resolution approaches specific to their sector.

This study will assist managerial staff in the banking industry with insights into the causes and tactical methods of dispute resolution. The study will enable them to build a pleasant work environment in which management and employees can collaborate to achieve organisational goals.

The study is useful to the government since conflict occurs more frequently in the public sector than in the private sector. The study’s findings will help the government develop successful conflict-resolution tactics in the public sector. The study also teaches union leaders how to use their positions to promote industrial harmony in both private and public organisations.

Finally, the study contributes to a body of information on dispute resolution and employee performance. Students, academics, and researchers planning to undertake research on the subject will find this study beneficial. The study makes an equivalent contribution to the empirical literature on the issue.

1.9 Definition of Operational Terms.

Conflict: This is an open conflict between two opposed organisations. Conflict in the organisational environment refers to a disagreement between a group of employees and management regarding their interests and aspirations. Conflict can also arise amongst groups of employees in an organisation (Uju, 2010).

Conflict Resolution: This is the process of providing solutions to conflicts as they arise. Conflict is resolved using conflict resolution tactics. Common dispute resolution tactics include avoidance, accommodation, mediation, arbitration, and negotiation (Thakore, 2013; Longe, 2015).

An employee is a person who is hired to do a specific task. (Oxford English Dictionary).

Employee performance refers to an employee’s ability to achieve particular defined outcomes over a given period of time. Several variables are used to assess employee performance, including job competency, creativity, cooperation skills, interpersonal relationships, and time management abilities (Dunlop, 2010).

Forcing Strategy: This is often referred to as competitive strategy. It entails one party using authority or power to determine the result of a conflict regardless of the opposing party’s views (Ojo & Abolade, 2013).

Smoothing Strategy: This is also known as the Accommodation Strategy. This method allows one party to address the concerns and requests of the opposing party while ignoring its own (Ojo & Abolade, 2013).

Avoidance Strategy: This is a strategy in which one party ignores or avoids the problem without taking any action to address it. (Ojo and Abolade, 2013; Irene, 2014).

Confrontation technique: This technique uses protest, violence, vandalism, struggle, and demonstrations to resolve issues (Ojo & Abolade, 2013; Irene, 2014).

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